September 6, 2011

Extent Of Beckett's Injury Unclear, Media Seeds Clouds Of Doom

Josh Beckett sustained an injury to his right ankle yesterday and left the game mid-batter in the fourth inning. We know almost nothing about the severity of the injury or even exactly what went wrong. Beckett flew back to Boston for a more throughout examination today.
It's something in my ankle, I'm not sure what. It's always concerning. That's my power leg. ... It's definitely stiff. ... I felt it on the second-to-last pitch. It felt a little bit different on the last pitch I threw. ... It felt like it was locked up and then like it popped in and out of the socket or something. ... It's pretty bad timing. But I could be back out there in six days. ... I could wake up tomorrow and feel like playing basketball. We'll just see.
WEEI's Rob Bradford:
Beckett does not have what we would classically define as a sprained ankle.

The diagnosis of the injury suffered by the pitcher in the fourth inning Monday was originally classified as a sprain, but has since been identified as something different. It isn't clear if it is more promising, or potentially more threatening. As the pitcher said after the loss, he has never experienced anything like this so answers will have to come when he visits with foot specialist Dr. George Theodore Tuesday.
Jason Varitek:
He just came off the rubber funny. I can't tell you what I saw. Something looked weird, and he was kind of making a face.
Beckett also mentioned that he fell in the bullpen, before the game.
[I was] trying to get off the mound and take a shirt off. I didn't feel it between there. I didn't feel it until those last two pitches. ... I was just trying to change shirts and they have concrete or something down there. I fell. I don't know, but I don't think it had anything to do with it. I think I would have felt it earlier than that.
Daniel Bard:
Obviously, he's been our best guy from Day 1. Talking to him, it didn't seem as bad as we first thought.
If Beckett is hurt, it's serious, of course (and Erik Bedard will not start on Friday because of a strained ligament in his left knee), but several reporters noted that after the game:
(a) his ankle did not appear swollen,

(b) it was not wrapped,

(c) he put on his cowboy boots as he normally does,

(d) he was not limping, and

(e) he was not using crutches.
Regardless, the media began moved quickly into pessimistic doom-mode.

The Globe's Peter Abraham said the wild card standings are suddenly of great importance:
When Josh Beckett walked slowly off the mound in the fourth inning favoring his right ankle yesterday, did any hope of the Red Sox advancing deep into the postseason go with him? ...

[The Red Sox] now trail the Yankees by 2.5 games in the American League East, their largest deficit since July 2.

Of suddenly greater significance is that the Sox lead Tampa Bay by seven games in the wild card with 22 to play. The teams will play each other seven more times.
John Tomase of the Herald acknowledged that this injury could be serious or it could be nothing:
All we know at the moment is that the surest thing in the Red Sox rotation just became a question mark with the playoffs less than a month away. ...

Until Beckett receives a full workup, we're left in the dark with our worst-case scenarios and fears of the Sox trying to win a playoff series with him at less than 100 percent. ...

Now Beckett's next start is a giant question mark. Maybe it'll be next week. Maybe it'll be at the end of September.
Michael Silverman, Herald:
It's hard to script a tougher or sadder opening act to a road trip than the one managed by the Red Sox yesterday.

Not only did [Beckett sprain his ankle], but the team went on to eat up nearly all of its bullpen ... [and] the Red Sox fell 2.5 games out of first place in the American League East.

Other than that, it was a nice afternoon 25 days before the playoffs begin. ...

[O]ne slip on the mound by Beckett was all it took for a previously unseen cloud of concern about the club's pitching health start to hover ominously and awfully close.


FenFan said...

Doom and gloom in the sports section - the bread and butter of Boston newspapers. *yawn*

allan said...

Even the wild card is in jepoardy!!!

Amy said...

Even I am not yet in panic mode (though I am not happy that we may have another pitcher or two out of commission for even just a few games).